The Etiquette Of Pronouns When You’re Unsure

People often want to be respectful, but are unsure of what to do if they are unsure of someone’s preferred pronouns. In my post on creating an inclusive classroom I talked about the importance of this. Take a look at this clip from the show So Popular with Janet Mock discussing pronouns in terms of Bruce Jenner’s transition. Continue reading

Must Watch Series or Documentaries On LGBTQ Lives

In the past few years different youth theatre groups, filmmakers, and documentaries have emerged to the masses to better educate and show the lives of LGBTQ youth. Below are 4 must watch documentaries. Some are in  the process of being produced. Others are free and available online. Another aspect of all of these shows/films are that the individuals in them are all LGBTQ. Educators take a few moments to watch these and explore how they might be useful in your schools or as a resource for students.

The Year We Though About Love

Synopsis

What happens when a diverse group of LGBTQ youth dares to be “out” on stage to reveal their lives and their loves?

“The Year We Thought About Love” goes behind the scenes of one of the oldest queer youth theaters in America, with our camera crew slipping into classrooms, kitchens, subways, and rehearsal rooms with this fearless and endearing troupe. Boston-based True Colors: OUT Youth Theater transforms daily struggles into performance for social change. With, candor, and attitude, our cast of characters captivates audiences surprised to hear such stories in school settings. Our film introduces a transgender teenager kicked out of her house, a devout Christian challenging his church’s homophobia, and a girl who prefers to wear boys’ clothing even as she models dresses on the runway. When bombs explode outside their building, the troupe becomes even more determined to share their stories of love to help heal their city.”

Source: The Year We Thought About Love 

Passing

Passing

“Passing” profiles the lives of three men of colour who have undergone gender transition from female to male. The film explores what life is like living as a black man when no one knows you are transgender and how each of them now, perceives their own journey with gender after many years of being interacted with by the world as a biological man.”

Source: “Passing” INDIEGOGO Campaign

 

Laverne Cox Presents: The T Word

“Laverne Cox Presents: The T Word” takes viewers inside the challenging and inspiring lives of seven transgender youths from across the country. Learn their incredible stories, and how their determination to live an authentic life is helping them become the person they are truly meant to be. Emmy-nominated actress and transgender advocate Laverne Cox serves as executive producer and host of this moving and thought-provoking documentary.”

 

brothersb-w1

 

 BROTHERS
“The series follows their daily lives, the ups and down, in and outs, of what it means to live as a transgender individual in today’s urban society. The series’ main character Jack has recently started sleeping with a cisgender man after exclusively dating women for his entire adult life. His friend Davyn is on the verge of proposing to his long time girlfriend, Amy. Aiden is the youngest of the group and is pre-testosterone and pre-surgery, but aiming to raise money for his top surgery as the date approaches. And Max, the eldest, has been on hormones longer than both Jack and Davyn, but hasn’t had the financial resources to obtain his top surgery. What does it mean to struggle and succeed as a trans person in the complicated fabric of today’s society?”

 

Source: Brothers Series

 

 

Why Showing Trans Youth Teachers Are Supportive Is Necessary

5ways

Source: Trans Student Educational Resources

 

This post has been weighing on my mind since early December. I wrote an Op-ed for the Advocate about public accommodations in schools for students who are transgender. Think about how being treated like everyone else in school can positively affect your day? Just before and after this piece came out there were several suicides within the transgender youth community. This saddens me that these individuals are gone and didn’t have the support and resources they needed. As an educator I want students to know that there are many of us who are here to support you, listen to you, and here to help you find resources. Continue reading

How To Create An Inclusive Classroom Tip 2

Create a classroom library with books about all kinds of identities. As with any classroom library it’s a good idea to slowly add books that cover topics that students may not be familiar with. Consider highlighting some of these books as a read aloud with specific discussions or activities before adding them to your library.

Think of some ways to integrate them into a unit you teach during the school year.

One thought might be to do an identity project (developmentally appropriate for 5th or 6th graders) and use some of these books as a read aloud.

Here are 8 books for elementary (1-6 or beyond) students that include characters that are transgender, broaden the sense of gender stereotypes, or are trying to educate about diversity: Continue reading

Tips For Creating An Inclusive Classroom For Kids Who Are Trans Part 1

As we approach the end of 2014 I’m beginning a few projects for this blog. The first one will be a tips for those who work with youth on how to create a more inclusive classroom for kids who are of trans experience. To be clear I’m using the word Trans to include individuals who are genderqueer, gender variant, transgender, transexual, gender neutral, two-spirit, feminine of center, masculine of center, etc…

I’ll take this moment to highlight something. As a special educator the students I work with in the past are used to being defined by their disability. I don’t agree with this use of language and therefore use people first language. I’ll be doing the same thing when talking about young people who are of trans experience. I feel that this is an important aspect of language because someone may have this experience, but it does not completely define them.

On to the first tip! Continue reading

12 Trans Leaders Making A Difference: A Reflection On Transgender Day of Remembrance

In November of every year, specifically the week of the 20th, we remember those whose lives were taken for being their authentic selves. Every year there are hundreds of deaths that impact our community. This week every year I take several moments to remember those people and am grateful for my life. This year was the 15th anniversary of Transgender Day Of Remembrance. This day was started in response to the murder of Rita Hester, a transwoman of color who was murdered in her apartment in Boston in 1999. This year alone there were 200+ transgender people killed by acts of violence. This number doesn’t include those who took their own life. Trans women of color are some of the most targeted people in the community for simply being themselves. We are all people looking to live our lives to our fullest potential. Why do these atrocities continue? One factor has to be that kids aren’t given exposure and interactions to different kinds of people in schools. This needs to change. How will you create change in your community to create citizens of the world? Continue reading